Members of the Belturbet CCE Cavan County Fleadh 2022 organising committee.

Cavan Fleadh – a mash of music and heritage in Belturbet

ENTRIES Closing date is April 8

In a unique twist, the Cavan County Fleadh will this year celebrate not just Irish traditional music, dance, song and art, but the humblest and most honourable of all vegetables - the simple spud!

With a nod to sustainable living, environmental impact, healthy eating, and grow-your-own, the 2022 county fleadh, taking place once again in Belturbet, will embrace the wealth of crafts associated with potatoes as its theme.

“Prátaí-licious!” sums up Chair of Belturbet CCE, Ann Grogan, the local group again delighted to host the Cavan County Fleadh this coming June bank holiday weekend.

“Considering what we’ve all be through since we were last able to come together, and the year that’s in it, with inflation and everyone being encouraged to grow vegetables, go back to basics somewhat, we felt the humble potato was a good representation of that,” explains Ann of the novel theme.


The Erneside town will hold a formal launch for the fleadh this Friday, April 1, at the platform at Belturbet Railway Station and Heritage Museum.

The county fleadh launch coincides with the PJ Flood commemorative weekend, successfully running in Belturbet since 2014, and a celebration of the life of renowned local piper and teacher. The highlight of this year’s weekend will be on Saturday, April 2 - tickets €10 and €5 for under 16s.

Along with playing music at Friday’s fleadh launch, some of the town’s junior musicians from the start swap their instruments for shovels and dig a ridge of potatoes in the newly established community allotment area, which they’ll be able to monitor throughout the summer and hopefully then harvest a substantial crop come Autumn.

“When that comes we’ll have a harvest and a session as well, potato bread, boxty and everything else. Everyone loves a spud. It’s a very versatile food and a staple for many families’ meals.”

The last ‘in-person’ county fleadh was in 2019 and was hugely successful for both the town and musicians who attended, with only online events held in years thereafter due to Covid restrictions.

The upcoming fleadh launch at the railway platform will be the first opportunity to get a real flavour of what is planned by the Belturbet organising committee for the June bank holiday Weekend. The event is expected to open with a concert by the hugely popular and widely renowned High Stool Prophets.

In keeping with the theme, over the June Bank Holiday weekend, the Belturbet CCE committee will also host a traditional evening with cooking craft demonstrations and other hobby stalls - offering attendees the opportunity to make their own boxty or potato bread to bring home and cook.

Entries open

Ann also reminds that the closing date for all entries (music, song and dance) for the Cavan County Fleadh 2022 is 5pm on Friday, April 8.

All perpetual trophies must also be returned by the fleadh launch date.

Ann adds that there will be a “very special competition” for all junior musicians who attend the county fleadh over the June Bank Holiday Weekend - U10 tin-whistle and miscellaneous - where every child “will be a winner”.

“It’s all inclusive and for children not necessarily taking part in any other competitions. It’s about encouraging involvement. Our fleadh is a really good opportunity to look forward, not back, work through Covid, not under it and begin to move on with our lives again. We lost a lot over the past two years, so we want to revive the friendships within music, which is such a big part of it all. We want to see and hear people play together again. Weather allowing, we’re hoping a lot of our events can be held out on the street, which brings a wonderful festival feel to the town.”